Reeling in Bundoran 2021

It was another year of uncertainty as we started 2021 in lockdown resulting in a very quiet town for pretty much the first quarter. The weather wasn’t so bad though and we got to take some nice photos!

Sunset at the Peak – taken Sunday 28th February 2021

And of course send our love on Valentines Day

As March rolled around, it was obvious that there wouldn’t be a St Patrick’s Day parade for the second year in a row so we compromised with a bit of nostalgia and local entertainment hosted by Tourism Officer Shane Smyth

We also turned green, as did, once again a number of our partner Douzelage towns, many of whom turned various local landmarks green as part of Tourism Ireland’s Global Greening campaign.

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On a stormy day at the end of March, the BBC came to visit

In April we got the great news that we were being provided with a grant from Failte Ireland to build a Water Sports Facility Centre at Tullan Strand under their Platforms For Growth scheme.

artist rendering of failte ireland facility - platforms for growth bundoran
Architect rendering of Failte Ireland facility to be built at Tullan Strand.

We were also able to move around the county from mid April with many of our northern friends crossing the border to their holiday homes in Bundoran

For a feature to air in May, we welcomed the RTE Today Show and James Patrice to find out all about Bundoran and of course to learn how to surf! You can watch the feature here or by clicking the image below.

James Patrice of RTE’s Today Show

Our Tidy Towns team was working hard with various projects during lockdown – one of which was to create two new selfie spots because it’s all for the ‘gram!

At the end of May we were delighted to once again be awarded the Blue Flag for Main Beach. This is a very important achievement for us each year and we acknowledge the hard working staff from Donegal County Council who make this happen.

The Blue Flag flying over Main Beach during the summer bathing season of 2021.

The northern bank holiday at the end of May brought many tourists to the town – a welcome sight after such a long time. The weather was good and the beach was packed!

A week later it was our turn for a bank holiday, kicked off in style with a live broadcast from iRadio at Tullan Strand.

iRadio’s Dave Duke and Fionnuala Corbett live from Tullan Strand on the June Bank Holiday weekend

RTE News were also in town that weekend to see how things were going

Two weeks later, local woman Andrea Gilligan brought her Newstalk “Lunchtime Live” show on the road to Bundoran and the Allingham Arms

Andrea Gilligan hosting “Lunchtime Live” on Newstalk at the Allingham Arms and speaking with Daniel Browne and Ray O’Donoghue of Sea Sessions

We also launched our two new webcams offering live views of Main Beach and The Peak 24 hours a day.

The view from the webcam situated at Main Beach

Also in June, good news for our social media team as the Discover Bundoran account on Twitter gets verified! (It’s a big deal for us and we now have the infamous blue tick!!)

Indoors went outdoors as dining al fresco dominated the streetscape of Bundoran with many of our food providers opting to provide the facility for customers due to restrictions still in place.

Outdoor dining at Madden’s Bridge Bar
outdoor dining bundoran - Allingham Arms
Outdoor Dining at the Allingham

We were delighted to announce a number of new initiatives in town for the new season including a water tap and showers at Main Beach, Free Wifi at Main Beach and the Tourist Office and more!

We had some hot days during the summer with thousands of people taking advantage of the beach

Main Beach Saturday 17th July 2021

One of those taking advantage of our outdoor swimming areas was the one and only Nathan Carter

In August, our little baby podcast “The Bundoran Weekly” reached a milestone of 150 episodes!

The podcast is released every Friday morning at 10am on all the major podcast platforms and via where you can listen to all episodes on demand (if you’re so inclined!). You can listen to the most recent episode by scrolling to the end of this page.

We had some special guests doing some filming in August for something extra special airing on ITV across the UK in 2022. Our lips are sealed….

Filming with some special guests on Rougey in August

What has to be the most photographed cave in the country this year was featured on the Tourism Ireland US account – it’s beside the Thrupenny Pool in case you were wondering!


On August 22, 100 brave souls battled the Bundoran Bay Swim in aid of Bundoran Community Centre

Also in August, Kathryn Thomas and her daughter Ellie paid a visit to The Fairy Bridges on RTE’s “No Place Like Home” and made a wish on the Wishing Chair!

Not so secretive was the filming that also took place at the Fairy Bridges with Irish act Xona – this will air on RTE and on TV in the US in the new year!

Irish artist Xona performing live at the Fairy Bridges

In September, the September sessions took place where we welcomed a multitude of Irish acts to the outdoor stage at the Great Northern including the Coronas, Michael Moloney, Lyra and Gavin James

Gavin James performing at September Sessions in Bundoran

Other artists in town took the opportunity to treat themselves to a Bundoran Seaweed Bath and were gracious enough to take some pictures with the Seaweed Baths team!

Singers Mary Coughlan and Liam O’Maonlai and his partner Marion enjoying the Seaweed Baths

We got some “lovin” in October from

It was the end of an era towards the end of the year as the iconic Barbecue Restaurant was demolished in mid October.

The Barbecue Restaurant on Main Street was demolished in Mid October 2021

Our Pumpkin Parade was back in full swing for Halloween and we had a great jaunt down the main street on October 31st!

Marching down Main Street in the pumpkin parade on Halloween! Pic – Atlantic Apartotel/Niamh Hamill

November brought more TV coverage for us as Neil and Olga from Travers Holiday Park featured in the 3 part BBC Northern Ireland series “Ulster by the Sea”. If you have access to BBC iPlayer, you can still watch all three episodes.

and the iconic (but derelict) shelters on the Rougey Walk were also given the last rites and torn down at the start of December

Two of the shelters on the Rougey Walk were demolished on Monday 6th December 2021

Our #SpotifyWrapped also came at us in December to give us the good news that we had doubled our content and were being listened to in 16 countries! Thanks to everyone who listens every week!

And a photo taken in one of the caves in Bundoran makes it to the head of Irish Independent’s “Travel Insider” newsletter written by Pól Ó Conghaile.

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